BCD536HP: Favorites List Location Scan

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sfd119

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I noticed with the statewide system (WISCOM) I pulled from the DB and to my Favorites, hasn't been scanning all talkgroups. With the 996, I would just leave a tower on ID Search and multiple agencies would be there talking. Now, that's not the case and I only hear one (the closet one to me).

1. Even with ID Search on, will the scanner not scan a known TG if it's out of it's range based on GPS?
2. Is there a way to exempt TGs from location based scanning and just leave the towers as location based scanning?

Thanks.
 

phask

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I noticed with the statewide system (WISCOM) I pulled from the DB and to my Favorites, hasn't been scanning all talkgroups. With the 996, I would just leave a tower on ID Search and multiple agencies would be there talking. Now, that's not the case and I only hear one (the closet one to me).

1. Even with ID Search on, will the scanner not scan a known TG if it's out of it's range based on GPS?
2. Is there a way to exempt TGs from location based scanning and just leave the towers as location based scanning?

Thanks.
I'd say NO it will not.

Location for the TG is based on the system so only way I know would be change the location for the systems.

Why not just scan the towers in actual range?

Disregard if using mobile and I have no quick fix.
 

sfd119

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I'm using a mobile + GPS to pick the best Towers. But because WISCOM is pretty new, I leave ID Search on. I see in the software that the TGs appear to have ranges in them. Looks like I'll have to touch each of them individual and just set them all at 200 or something.

Thanks.
 

phask

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Look closer - AFAIK - that is the system range - not the TG.

But I think that should work for you - just change it for the system.
 

sfd119

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Okay..so I pull up WISCOM> Adams County in my Favorites List Editor. Under Channels, it shows the TGs Under Location, it shows this:



I can do the same thing under the towers. I'm curious if messing with the range on a per county basis (TGs) if it causes them to not show up.

If I get a chance, I'm going to test tonight. One of the TGs I am no longer hearing is just a bit out of the range ring, so I'm going to up it to 200miles and see what happens.
 

ofd8001

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There's kind of an "apples and pears" paradigm with the newer model scanners.

You have to be "in range" of a site for the scanner to "hear" the site. (Apples part)

You also have to be "in range" of the department associated with the known talkgroup for the scanner to "hear" channels in the department. (Pears part)

So the situation you appear to be in is that you are hearing the site, but because the department is out of range, the talkgroups are being avoided.

What you mention - increasing range for the departments containing the talkgroups - would do the trick.

The first thing I'd try, and this is a shot in the dark, is to bump up the Range setting on the scanner using the Rang button. If that doesn't help, revert back to what it was.

If I remember correctly, the T/XT models could have their groups (departments) set to 0/0 Lat/Long and that effectively turns off location control for the group. But the newer models don't work that way.
 

sfd119

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Yeah, that's what it is. 996XT is monitoring same site as the 536 and it picked up DG LAW1 (which is out of my GPS range but is being pushed out to the Lampson tower).

Submitted this as a feature request. I would like when scanning a trunking system when I'm on ID Search that it disables the GPS function of known TGs. When I'm on ID Scan it can use the GPS settings of the TGs.
 

ofd8001

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You may have a good case to present to the Wisconsin DB administrator for increasing the range of counties. Sounds like the actual "receivable" range of a county is more than what is set in the database.

If that gets done, you'd have to re-build your Wisconsin Favorites List. But I think doing so from the master DB might be less time consuming than having to go into each department and changing the range value.

I wouldn't be surprised if Department (or groups/counties/etc.) comes up as an issue in a couple of months. The HP series radios requiring a lat/long/range for Departments versus the T/XT models ignoring this for 0 settings is something relatively new that folks will have to be mindful of.

When people start doing their summer traveling with Location Control scanning, we are likely to see some posts saying "I should have heard xxx but didn't".

This summer will definitely be a good test of the database during vacation season.

Hopefully you can get the Wisconsin DB administrator to make the change - I might well be passing through there myself this summer.
 

sfd119

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It's not a Wisconsin thing. When you have a statewide (or any) trunking, any radio will affiliate to whatever tower it can and is authorized for. Depending on the TG, it could go anywhere in the state. If the radio is on a tower near to me, it will pull in the TGs off of that tower.

If a Madison PD radio is on the Superior Tower, in theory it would pull the Madison PD TGs on the Superior tower and could talk back to home if it's authorized to do so. That's the great part of a statewide system.

Re doing the entire DB won't help everyone and you'll have people upset about it. The simple solution is when I am in ID Scan, to utilize GPS; when I'm in ID Search, it shouldn't matter what the GPS is, if it's getting pushed to that tower, I want to hear it.
 

phask

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That might work for YOU - but for others it would not.

If that was implemented it would need to be selectable - and that would be difficult to explain to users, who already can't understand these things.
 

KE4ZNR

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It's not a Wisconsin thing. When you have a statewide (or any) trunking, any radio will affiliate to whatever tower it can and is authorized for. Depending on the TG, it could go anywhere in the state. If the radio is on a tower near to me, it will pull in the TGs off of that tower.
To add more context to sfd's comment above it is a system by system basis. Here in NC on VIPER you have some talkgroups designated statewide event talkgroups in which any authorized radio programmed with said statewide event talkgroups can affiliate to any VIPER tower statewide but you have other talkgroups that are restricted to a subset of towers based on location. One Example is the Wake County simulcast talkgroups (which are still part of the statewide Smartzone system) in which radios are allowed to affiliate
to Wake County towers but not to any towers outside of Wake County (the radios simply say "OUT OF RANGE".
Just food for thought
Marshall KE4ZNR
 

UPMan

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Sounds like the actual "receivable" range of a county is more than what is set in the database.
The range in the dB should not be set to the receivable range. It should be set so as to cover the geopolitical boundaries of the agency.
 

sfd119

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The range in the dB should not be set to the receivable range. It should be set so as to cover the geopolitical boundaries of the agency.
And I agree with this. The large majority of people this will work as intended. I'm just special and want to hear all TGs off of whatever Tower my GPS is picking.

Not a big deal, I just set the range in the favorites list to 1,000 for everything.
 

ofd8001

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I've been known to "go against the grain" from time to time when it comes to conventional wisdom. I'm sure that long and careful thought was given by the right folks when the philosophy of setting geopolitical boundaries concept was decided.

So with that said, I respectfully disagree. Here's a real-life example: The Louisville MetroSafe radio system (P25 simulcast with 13 towers) is set for 25 miles. I can be 35+ miles away and "hear" the system, but the database programming would have "shut off" all the departments due to range.

I've worked around this by changing range settings. That works for me because I'm familiar. But what about:


  1. Others travelling through the area who are not familiar?
  2. When I travel to other areas and don't know those systems?
  3. Other local users who are just getting their feet wet with the new model scanners?

The nature of radios affiliiating to different tower sites underlines the concept that local operations often extend beyond local boundaries.
 

UPMan

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If the system is set to the geographical boundaries, it is easy to include it, even when you are outside the boundary, by setting the scanner's range setting to a higher number. However, for those who only want to listen to those agencies that are geographically relevant to their precise position (i.e. scanner range=0), there would be no way to programmatically exclude systems that were mis-selected due to their having a range setting that exceeded the geopolitical boundary. Even with the database being as restrictive as it is, it is about 53.862 times more likely that someone will complain about an excessive number of irrelevant channels being selected than it is for someone to complain that a channel they were interested in hearing was not selected.
 

sfd119

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Yep, I agree with that. I just want to hear everything coming across the tower I have selected...err the GPS has selected for me (the system is still new) but most people will not.
 

ofd8001

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What was done in setting up the database and the reasons behind doing so are very logical.

Coming up with something to fit everyone's specific desires isn't practical or reasonable and I can be an "out in left field" sort every now and then.

With "work-arounds" in place, life is good.
 

UPMan

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And, of course, the other option for those who want "non-standard" setups is to make a Favorites List and modify settings to your heart's desire. :)
 

sfd119

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And, of course, the other option for those who want "non-standard" setups is to make a Favorites List and modify settings to your heart's desire. :)
You bet. I already have been tweaking the Statewide system and locations to work for me.

Now if there was only a way to sync new TGs & Towers from the DB to my Favorites list...
 

cjabass123

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Need Location Based Scanning Help

Just got a 536hp. Set up a fav list for my county. One system. Four sites. 7 or 8 Depts. Unlike some who wish to hear EVERYTHING, I only want to hear the stuff going on NEAR me.

So I took it for a ride. I do not have the GPS yet, so I used several zip code (range) settings as I went along. My sites are set to around 7 miles. I was expecting to only hear one or two sites, but I was still picking up signals from distant sites that I thought would be auto-avoided by the range settings.

My county is 70 miles long. My "overall" range setting was set to 35 miles. I am now thinking that perhaps I should set my overall range setting (forgive terminology) to zero and let the Site and Dept range settings control everything. Can someone confirm that that makes sense and will work?

Or perhaps just provide some good insight how the different "levels" of range settings affect reception?
 
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